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Beaver Lake Nature Center: It's maple syrup time

In Central New York, one of the signs of spring is Maple Syrup Time at Beaver Lake Nature Center. The "First Harvest" includes a demonstration sugarbush with six different stations to introduce visitors to the heritage of maple sugaring as well as an opportunity to sample the fruits of photosynthesis. The sugarbush will be open to the public and staffed with knowledgeable interpreters from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekends in March and Saturday April 3.

The sugarbush will not be the only part of the Nature Center bustling with activity; the visitor center itself will be the spot to get breakfast in addition to many types of maple goodies. A pancake breakfast will be offered from 9 a.m. to noon weekends in March and Saturday April 3 and, depending on the appetite, will range from $2.50 to $4.50. Maple goodies such as maple cream, maple candy and sapsuckers will be for sale by the Friends of Beaver Lake.

This is a free program with the $3 per car admission to the park.

Relax and renew

Beaver Lake Nature Center will offer two wellness programs designed for individual relaxation and renewal in a quiet, natural setting.

    Yoga class, held from 9 to 10 a.m. Mondays April 5 to June 7 (except May 31), will allow participants to renew and revive their body, mind and spirit. Warm-up stretches follow, moving into a variety of yoga postures. Yoga stretches, strengthens and tones the body, while creating a calm and focused mind. Each session will conclude with a guided relaxation. Cost is $50; pre-registration is required.

T'ai Chi Chih (TCC), held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesdays April 6 to May 25, is a set of movements completely focused on the development of an intrinsic energy called Chi. TCC consists of 19 stand-alone movements and one pose. As TCC does not require any particular level of physical fitness or coordination, it can be taught to anyone of any age. Some sessions may be held outside, weather permitting. Cost is $35; pre-registration is required.

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